Author Topic: Have a question  (Read 199 times)

raushan

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  • from India
    • S. N. Goenka switched to Samatha Forest Tradition
Have a question
« on: September 22, 2020, 02:08:29 AM »
Hello All,

Posting after a long time. So far in life, I have noticed there are some emotions that feel harmful to me. I mean I can understand why these emotions shouldn't be reign free.

Jealousy - If this emotion is there and if another person can notice then it can always be used against.
Anger - Same with anger it always causes more damage than the benefit.

I have felt some states in my life for a prolonged period like 1-2 years sometimes 6 months. I don't know exactly what to call it whether it's depression or anxiety. This state can come after a breakup or some sudden bad incident or lack of goal in life. I found that the mind is weaker during those events and can be easily manipulated by another person.
Also, the mind gravitates toward unwholesome things or emotions. Like it tries to remember past events which lead to regret.

Clearly, when a person comes out of such a state they realize how harmful were those states. And realizes the bad decisions they made.

My question is what should be done to not have unwholesome emotions. Like regret, anger, jealousy, anxiety, sadness, self-doubt, fearfulness. I have personally experienced that all these emotions are evil. I mean people regress when they are in these states. But still why I slip to those emotions again and again? There seem to be absolutely zero benefits of these emotions.

why it comes at all? The funny thing is other people manipulate other people using these emotions. A media uses fear to make popular their channel. Or a girl can use jealousy to control a guy. Or a Manager can use fear to control the employee. These emotions seem to be absolutely prison.

Thanks
Raushan
« Last Edit: September 22, 2020, 02:12:58 AM by raushan »

Middleway

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  • Just be a witness.
    • Vipassana as taught by Mr. Goenka - Switched to Shamatha
Re: Have a question
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2020, 11:39:26 AM »
Hi Roshan,

Good to hear from you. The question you asked is a universal question. We all go through pretty much same scenario everyday.

Constant thinking about sense objects leads to desire and attachment. Desire when not fulfilled leads to jealousy. Jealousy then leads to anger. Anger leads to delusion and loss of sanity. It’s a vicious circle.

This circle can be broken by regular practice on and off the cushion. First train the mind to develop some level of mindfulness by formal practice on the cushion. Second apply this mindfulness all day to watch the mind. Anytime you notice a sense object pulling your mind in, remind yourself that your mind got pulled in. For example, when you see a sense object and notice your mind grasping it, note it mentally as “seeing“. Same for all other sense objects. This will help break the constant thinking about sense objects and you break the train of thought or the vicious circle of discursive thinking.

Follow three gems at least a little bit each day. Practice on the cushion, read or hear about Dhamma, and participate in the sangha.

In the Dhamma,

Middleway
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

raushan

  • Staff
  • from India
    • S. N. Goenka switched to Samatha Forest Tradition
Re: Have a question
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2020, 08:05:25 PM »
Hi Middleway,

Thanks for the reply. Got reminded again. Yes, I feel seeing the emotions or anythings in the mind as soon as it arises is the key. I have to be more alert. On the constant lookout.

One particular thing I am facing problem with is How to know that the mind is bluffing. When the mind is in the weaker state it almost convinces me that a bad choice is a right decision. After only I reach a healthy state of mind I realize that a particular choice was bad or it was the reaction of some negative emotion.

Funny thing is it might have happened so many times unconsciously  that I don't even know.

Metta
Raushan
« Last Edit: September 22, 2020, 08:36:14 PM by raushan »

Middleway

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  • Just be a witness.
    • Vipassana as taught by Mr. Goenka - Switched to Shamatha
Re: Have a question
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2020, 01:40:14 AM »
Just know that decisions made are neither right or wrong. If this is the attitude, then it does not matter if the mind bluffs or not.
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

raushan

  • Staff
  • from India
    • S. N. Goenka switched to Samatha Forest Tradition
Re: Have a question
« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2020, 02:35:25 AM »
Hi Middleway,

There's definitely wrong choices or wrong karma which strays a person from the real path. An alcoholic or drug addict first have to reverse the damage they have caused themselves.

If there's no wrong decision then why Buddha told to refrain from mind altering substance or from sexual misconduct.

And I feel Mind bluffs all the time. Mind bluffs a person when he knows he shouldn't react on anger but the same mind or some unconscious voice is telling him being angry is a good thing.

Buddha has told it ignorance may be. May be it's a same thing or different.

How will you define above events?

Middleway

  • Staff
  • Just be a witness.
    • Vipassana as taught by Mr. Goenka - Switched to Shamatha
Re: Have a question
« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2020, 03:28:30 AM »
When you know Dhamma, you don’t make a choice to follow it. You naturally act in accordance with it. So, the matter is not about a right or wrong choice, it is about whether one understands and knows Dhamma. A person who is alcoholic or drug addict does not know or understand Dhamma. You don’t “choose” to walk on the side walk on a busy road.

Buddha asked us to refrain from sexual misconduct because it will be a hindrance to know Dhamma.

When you are angry, you are the anger. You are not separate from it. But thought comes in the way and says anger is not good. This is becoming and becoming creates conflict. Just try and observe and stay with anger. It goes away.

The culprit is psychological memory. Together with intellect, it creates ego-self. This is actually an I-thought that condemns another thought. This leads to conflict and suffering. Anytime, we have negative emotions, recognize ego is alive and kicking. Just keeping that in mind will make the ego-self less harmful.

Not understanding the Dhamma is ignorance. Being ignorant is not wrong. It just is... like everything else.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2020, 03:39:29 AM by Middleway »
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

Dhamma

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  • May we all fulfill our deepest wish for happiness
    • I take from all Buddhist schools + some yogic schools
Re: Have a question
« Reply #6 on: September 25, 2020, 01:42:24 AM »
When you know Dhamma, you don’t make a choice to follow it. You naturally act in accordance with it. So, the matter is not about a right or wrong choice, it is about whether one understands and knows Dhamma. A person who is alcoholic or drug addict does not know or understand Dhamma. You don’t “choose” to walk on the side walk on a busy road.

Buddha asked us to refrain from sexual misconduct because it will be a hindrance to know Dhamma.

When you are angry, you are the anger. You are not separate from it. But thought comes in the way and says anger is not good. This is becoming and becoming creates conflict. Just try and observe and stay with anger. It goes away.

The culprit is psychological memory. Together with intellect, it creates ego-self. This is actually an I-thought that condemns another thought. This leads to conflict and suffering. Anytime, we have negative emotions, recognize ego is alive and kicking. Just keeping that in mind will make the ego-self less harmful.

Not understanding the Dhamma is ignorance. Being ignorant is not wrong. It just is... like everything else.


Absolutely! That is a great posting, Middleway.

Giving up worldly pleasures when seeing "clearly" is not at all self-deprivation - it's about seeing how clinging to sensual pleasures only leads to greater suffering.

All worldly pleasures are still empty, even if engaging in non-harming sensual pleasures is morally fine (eating good food, non-violent and consensual sex, [no cheating on spouse], etc.) , if done in moderation. But , the big "but" is that they are not going to bring everlasting peace and happiness. It's all an illusion that they will. The craving and the wanting of them only causes suffering when seen with a clear mind. The pleasure derived from them is short-lived. We cling to what we like and crave. But we know that nothing external can make us permanently happy or content, once our basic human needs are met (food, clothing, shelter, healthcare, etc.). When we see how all phenomena comes and goes - the fleeting reality of all pleasures in our existence - we see how silly and absurd it is to cling and engage in external sensual pleasures. Why bother? LOL.

Now, sometimes, when I see a bunch of good food, I think how pointless it is to indulge. I enjoy my meals, but I don't like to indulge or really overeat. Just like some men will see how ludicrous sex is, and become celibate (myself, again, included).  No one is forced to do these things in Buddhism, but rather it comes as a result from the clear seeing of ultimate reality. And it doesn't feel at all as if you're being deprived; in fact, it has the opposite effect, which is liberation.

An enlightened monk has given up everything to have everything.  :)

No, you don't have to be a monk to gain enlightenment, but it's a beautiful path if you should choose so.


Much love in the Dhamma :)


« Last Edit: September 25, 2020, 01:57:37 AM by Dhamma »
You are already Buddha

Matthew

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Re: Have a question
« Reply #7 on: September 25, 2020, 06:08:29 PM »
Hi Raushan,

Good to see you here again :)

You wrote:

Quote
One particular thing I am facing problem with is How to know that the mind is bluffing. When the mind is in the weaker state it almost convinces me that a bad choice is a right decision. After only I reach a healthy state of mind I realize that a particular choice was bad or it was the reaction of some negative emotion.

As Middleway has suggested there is no right/wrong or good/bad in an absolute sense: there are wholesome and unwholesome thoughts, decisions, actions and words - which all bring differing karma (results) to your life. This is why we practice both when times are good and when times are hard, so we have the resilience to choose the wholesome over the unwholesome more and more often.

This is the basic "bootstrapping" process of being on the path: whereby we learn both by our "successes" and our "failures" to make the wisest choices. By succeeding we learn, and by failing we learn, yet as we learn more we succeed more and fail less.

This is how the weak mind can fool you. You need to be fooled sometimes to build a stronger mind. Like riding a bike: when learning, the only way to learn not to fall off is to fall off, at least a few times.

Best, in the Dhamma,

Matthew
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

 

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